a VirtualTourist member asked on Sep 4, 2016
What month would be your favorite time to explore some of Japan, Hong Kong & Macau?
We're thinking of about 3 weeks combined. Any month jump out at you more than the other?
We do like the Christmas season and snow but we aren't snowboarders/skiers.
We spend in December to Japan a year ago the weather like in Tokyo is nice not too cold, in other places of Japan is a bitter cold
We went during holiday season to HK and Macau a couple of years ago, the weather is nice not too hot, you need sweater to walk outside
Christmas is lovely in Hong Kong. There are lots of Christmas lights along the buildings on either side of the harbour. Shops and malls are all decorated with festive theme. Don't miss the firework at the harbour on New Year's eve.
November is nice for the colourful fall foliage in Japan. Gardens, temple grounds and parks are layered with red and yellow leaves.
Oh no! You've given a great reason to go at Christmas and New Years as well as November.
I'm sure Hong Kong would be insanely crowded for the New Years fireworks though eh?
October/November as the season is more settled and still warm. The autumn leaves provide a nice backdrop to a journey.
But, I like all of the months - they have different features.
Yes, it'll be very crowded for the new year's eve firework in Hong Kong. If you stay close enough to the harbour on either side, that's great as walking is the fastest way as nearby streets will be closed off for pedestrians only. Pretty much anywhere along the harbour in Tsim Sha Shui, Wanchai and Central will be perfect to see the firework. Go on youtube to see how spectacular it is.
Okay, we're thinking either the first half of Nov or first half of Dec to get a taste of Japan and Hong Kong in the Fall/Winter.
If we were to go Dec 1st - 19th, would there be all the Christmas lights and Christmas decorations? Or do those only appear right around the 25th?
We were in HK before Christmas, the city is already festive if you click the link you'll see how lovely HK in December [original VT link]
Japan is less festive than HK
The only times I would avoid are June through mid-July, which is the rainy season. It can be extremely hot, humid and uncomfortable. August can still be quite hot, but without the rain (and associated humidity) it is much more pleasant. I've spent time in Japan in both periods and would not recommend heading there while the rains are there.
There is a short rainy season that runs from mid-November through to early December as well
Christmas lights and decorations will be up well before the 25th. In some places you can see Halloween and Christmas side by side at the end of October. Some of the light displays around Tokyo are very spectacular (I had a group to look after over Christmas/New year and we managed to take in a few very pretty locations).
Christmas is not particularly festive in Japan, most people are distracted heading into the New Year holiday which is a family event. New Year is not a good time to visit Japan in my opinion. Given this, I'd say November. The weather is moderate and dry.
I agree that these season is good time for travel in Hong Kong and Japan. There are more sunny days than summer and early autumn. One thing though is beware of Hotel hike during autumn viewing season in Japan.